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A History of the Supreme Court

3.77  ·  Rating Details ·  66 Ratings  ·  4 Reviews
When the first Supreme Court convened in 1790, it was so ill-esteemed that its justices frequently resigned in favor of other pursuits. John Rutledge stepped down as Associate Justice to become a state judge in South Carolina; John Jay resigned as Chief Justice to run for Governor of New York; and Alexander Hamilton declined to replace Jay, pursuing a private law practice ...more
Paperback, 480 pages
Published February 23rd 1995 by Oxford University Press, USA (first published June 1979)
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Seth Zenz
Aug 31, 2011 Seth Zenz rated it really liked it
Seems pretty comprehensive, at least from the perspective of a non-expert. Good to see the sweep of history and the principles that affect the Court's decision-making process, rather than just what's in the news. Pet peeve: the author likes to use quotes in multiple places when they're applicable in both.
Erik
Dec 21, 2016 Erik rated it really liked it
A great one volume history of the U.S. Supreme Court that superbly discusses:
-The interplay of politics in the appointment process.
-The role of personality and interplay between the justices in how opinions are forged.
-The shifting philosophies of different phases of the Courts and how they relate to evolution of jurisprudence and the underpinnings of those philosophies.
-Covers a good selection of landmark cases as well as other important cases along the way while doing a good job of describing
...more
Ryan
Jun 15, 2009 Ryan rated it it was ok
A history of the U.S. Supreme Court. I had heard of justices like John Marshall, Oliver Wendell Holmes, Earl Warren, and Thurgood Marshall, but had no real idea when and how they served on the bench. The book divided the Court's history into sections highlighted by their Chief Justice (i.e., the Marshall Court, the Warren Court), and talked about the personalities and judicial capabilities of the Chief, the notable associate justices, key cases, and the effects their decisions had on the history ...more
Robert
This was a history of the Supreme Court. For those of us who are not legal scholars, this was a good history. I suspect those who study this would find this thin.

I fancy myself knowledgeable about SCOTUS, and that is somewhat due to having read this about 15 years ago.
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